From Active Duty to Full Time Entrepreneurship with Josh Elledge Featured Image

#20: From Active Duty to Full-Time Entrepreneurship with Josh Elledge

A former Navy journalist, Josh Elledge is now the Founder and CEO of UpMyInfluence. Josh has also worked in podcasting for over 7 years as a syndicated TV consumer expert and newspaper columnist. He also educates business owners on how to get free PR by appearing on TV and in the news.

Summary

Josh Elledge is a serial entrepreneur who founded UpMyInfluence (UMI) in 2014 to help entrepreneurs like him reach the right audience and grow their brands without the burden of having to deal with expenses associated with traditional PR firms. He is also regarded as one of the main authorities on internet authority and influence; he is a frequent speaker at business and startup conferences, has been on more than 100 podcasts, is a weekly consumer expert on Fox 35 Orlando and News 13, writes a syndicated column for nine newspapers (with a combined audience of over 1.1 million), and appears on more than 75 television stations around the country.

Before doing so, Josh served in the U.S. Navy and graduated from Brigham Young University with a bachelor’s degree in family science/therapy. His eventual startup breakthrough, UMI, was a natural outgrowth of his first startup, SavingsAngel.com; Josh launched the consumer savings platform in 2007. Thanks to his experience in information technology (IT) and Internet development, SavingsAngel.com grew rapidly, employing as many as 50 people and generating more than $6 million in sales despite spending less than $500 on advertising.

Today, UMI has grown into a mission-driven platform dedicated to democratizing access to influencers, helping entrepreneurs share a collective vision with the world. Josh currently resides in Orlando with his wife and three children.

Episode Highlights

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0:00 – 13:13: Josh introduces himself and discusses his background (his education, his experience when serving in the Navy, what made him interested in broadcast journalism, etc.).

13:21 – 22:05: Josh discusses his growth between the brief time he left active duty and the start of his first venture. He talks about his first startup (SavingsAngel.com) and how the company eventually grew into UpMyInfluence. An in-depth discussion of perspectives on a retired military career and how one must change with the world around them.

22:15 – 25:10: Josh explains how serving the startup community has greatly inspired him throughout his years of professional work. He also discusses the dynamism of the network and the need to change with the opportunity for excessive growth. He concludes that everyone (be they former military or not) can embrace their expertise and do anything they set their minds to.

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Gene spent nearly 25 years in uniform, serving in six ships and more than ten duty stations, and visiting over 50 countries serving as a US Navy Surface Warfare Officer and retiring as a Captain. In corporate, he led legislative affairs for a large international defense company from the Washington, DC office. In doing so, Gene gained a detailed understanding of the defense industrial base and supply chains of myriad platforms, systems and capabilities. Then in 2013, he took the leap to start his own business, Capitol Integration. Since then Gene has helped scores of companies improve their federal positions.

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